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Santa Fe
Open-air opera and Japanese-style spa treatments

From the March 26, 2001 Issue of New York

Seasoned fans of the legendary Santa Fe Opera know to come prepared: lawn chairs and pasta salad for the wait until dusk, blankets for the approaching desert night, and ponchos for the rain that occasionally blows in under the suspended roof. Now you must also brace yourself for new general director Richard Gaddes's ambitious program -- including, this summer, Mozart's Mitridate, Strauss's The Egyptian Helen, and Alban Berg's Wozzeck. After a night of arias, retire to the mountains, where Japanese spa treatments and suites with private courtyards await at Ten Thousand Waves. If you're ready to brave the downtown crowds -- especially dense during weekends like Indian Market (August 18-19) and the Santa Fe Fiesta (September 1-9) -- the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum and tasty restaurants like Coyote Cafe, Santacafe, and Pasqual's are just minutes away. Finally, no visit can be complete without a trip on the Friday-night gallery circuit. Riva Yares, Gerald Peters, and LewAllen Contemporary Galleries are consistently excellent, but you'll have the best time just following the crowd to the art openings and bars along Canyon Road.

Santa Fe Opera, www.santafeopera.org; Ten Thousand Waves, 505-982-9304 (rooms start at $185); Coyote Cafe, 505-983-1615; Santacafe, 505-984-1788; Cafe Pasqual's, 505-983-9340; gallery listings, see Pasatiempo in Friday Santa Fe New Mexican.

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